Wednesday, 30 April 2014

Rain,Fun and a complete Cock!

  Once upon at time there was this geet old miserable twat...But hey we will get to that bit later on...

Just lately I never seem to have a minute to myself, don't get me wrong I'm not complaining, it just takes a lot of getting used to. Going from being ill for all those years and basically doing nothing everyday then getting up and knowing I had the same to look forward to the next day, then the next and so on. I suppose in a way it's the same for the majority of people who are unemployed, no money to do anything,depressed and frustrated. My friend John is out of work and I sometimes see his frustrations and how he doesn't like taking anything from me, for instance if I treat him to a McDonald's or buy a gear cable for his bike. I tell John "that's what friends are for" to help you out when your struggling, give you a bit of morale support and tell you everything will work itself out. You can't buy proper friendship and hey money is made to go around.


My m8 John
 Last night I got a call from another new friend of mine Lee."You coming around tonight, John's here" he said, "Michelle is cooking and both you and your dad are welcome" ( Michelle is Lee's wife ). I had kind of missed the whole Facebook too and froing between Michelle and John so wasn't aware we had been invited around. Lee and Michelle even invited Mr Hink's, however I left him at home as he can be a bit boisterous and a right pest. So around 5:30'ish my dad and I drove around to Lee and Michelle's and once there received a lovely warm welcome. Tonight was going to be film night. First Lee popped  the video on I had shot whilst out on our bike packing adventure, it's not a bad effort and although long some of the scenes are really good. Then it was time to view Lee's video. It was awesome, with a bit of everything,fun laughter,beautiful scenery,disappointment and even featured the voices of the scum bags who kept us up all night...PICKLES!!! you Twat. Michelle had cooked a lovely chilli con carne, with some rice and a few dips...it was great to sit at the table and just share some canny craic with such nice people. My dad, Ern was on his best behaviour (I'd warned him before we set off lol) Once every one had finished Michelle rocked in with a delicious home made banana cake and this just rounded the night off. A little more chatting then it was time to go. Lee saying "see what the weather is like tomorrow, might head out for a ride yeah". I think Lee had mentioned heading over towards Hetton for something. Anyhoo Lee said he would call me and arrange something depending on the weather.

At around 08:01am John sends me a message, "morning mate you up for a look out" I hop off my bed and look out of my window, it's persistently raining...we have a mini chat via Facebook, should we stay or should we go kind of deal. I txt Lee, no response. Then John messages me "ok lets dee it, it's only water". I get up have a quick wash and start to get ready, plasters on me arse,check, new gel lined shorts check,Troy Lee Red shorts un-check, they will get hacky..."Mmmm I'll pop my other Troy Lee's on as they are made from a heavier nylon and they are mostly black in colour, ok check. I then pop on a Sondico base layer which I got from Sports Direct, it was only £11:99 and worth every penny, in fact I now have 4 different coloured ones...well you have to look co-ordinated when riding lol. I'm now downstairs and pop on my Bartlett Tendon, aww crap wrong shoes...I'm going to need my Shiamno Gortex boots on today me thinks. I proceed to take off the shoe that is already on my BTK and then put on my Shimano boot, fasten it all up, then see that I have done my usual trick and put the Left boot on my Right prosthetic leg. It's murder trying to clip in like this so I think best course of action may be to take it off and select the right boot for the right foot.

Ok I'm just about ready, camera gear packed,waterproof'ish jacket on. My Fat Bike is in bits in our dining room so I'm taking my trusty old Steed, my 7 year old Ibis Mojo SL. I haven't been out much on the old girl so check the tyres,gears and pop some air in the front and rear shocks. Ooh I also pop on my new uber bright back light, which I blogged about earlier, it's awesome. John is here and a bit stressed, however he is looking forward to today's epically wet ride.


Uber Bright 60 lumens
 I get astride my Ibis and straight away it feels totally alien. Something I have noticed since riding my Fat Bike is how stretched out I am, yet the Sandman feels spot on. My Ibis on the other hand felt weird when I first got it, too long, so I  put a 50mm Race Face stem on to pull the cockpit back. Now however the bike feels way to cramped. just goes to show what you get used to huh!

John and I head off down the back of my street. "You fancy Fox Parrot Woods John" I say to which John says his usual line "anywhere mate". So off we head in the direction of Craghead, actually passing the junction into Lee's housing estate. I didn't want to call in as I wasn't sure if he would be up, so just thought "ahh he will ring"

John and I got along to Fox Parrot and set about shooting some footage on my GoPro. Today's footage I am really disappointed with, not so much the shots, no it's a problem I've encountered before and that's the GoPro casing misting up. This means it ruins your shots. Never mind I will try my best to give you all a sense of our day out, as long as you bare in mind it was soaking out there and I just couldn't do anything with my camera.



Bit mucky like
 We get a few shots,after a few takes. A great deal of time spent trying to hammer in a discarded plastic tube into the ground with a rock to make a makeshift mono-pod to affix my camera too lol. Just then Lee calls "you out he says", "yeah we are just at Fox Parrot" I tell him. We have a short conversation and we arrange to meet Lee at the entrance to Beamish Museum in around an hours time.

John and I continue our filming on the way to meet Lee. John hasn't been this way before so I'm trying to notify him of any  hazards. We have a great time at the bottom of one bank as there is a huge puddle filled with mud, it's so good riding this bit we do it 3 times for the camera. Next is a steepish incline. "watch yourself down here John" I say, telling him "there's a small bridge across the stream". I head off John filming me with my stil misty camera. I get to the bridge and turn to see and hear John...A noise which is pretty hard to type, but let me try "Aghhhhheeeeeeee". John comes booling down and panics as he sees the stream "Abort,abort" is going through his mind as he goes over the handle bars. John is in hysterics, laughing. I see he is ok so join in, Now that was funny.

Care in the Community
YooHoo






















Da Man!
Travolta eat your heart out



















I didn't realise you were so small John

  Next we headed back up the bank and went through a Farm. I have no idea of the name of this place, what I do know is they have a huge dog and it came bounding out carrying a piece of 4x4 in it's mouth.Dear me I'm pleased I don't have a wooden leg. We just kept riding hoping the dog would be more interested in his piece of wood. Another climb past the steaming horse sh...ahem manure and eventually this brought us out where the Jingling Gate used to be. A quick ride past the vets at Edenfield and around the back of Plantation View and we are onto another field after lifting our bikes over the style. Yet another field and this brought us out at a wooded area, it's where they do the paint balling. Looked on a few maps and it's just classed as Beamish Woods. From here it was up the road to the roundabout, then turn right and cross and ride down towards the Shepard and Shepherdess pub and the Entrance to Beamish Museum.

A little wait and Lee rolls in, the 3 amigo's back together. We discuss a few potential routes, trying to decide which one will be the less washed out. I suggest one through Beamish woods and the lads follow. This section of the woods is beautiful, lots of descents so you get a nice flow going and the smell of the wild garlic is very nice. Even though it was raining this place is so beautiful and it becomes even more so in the summer.  Eventually we come out at the bottom picnic area and have a heavy climb back up towards the Causey and  Blue Bell. The rain cools me as I ride and in a way is a welcome relief, even though my boots are now full of water, my shorts are caked in mud and soaked through and my rain jacket, well it has failed. It has either kept all the rain out but I have sweated so much I am still soaking or it just plain couldn't handle the water.

On to the Causey Arch road now, we turn right and head down towards the entrance to Tanfield Railway. Now prepare yourselves as I'm going to have a rant, just be ready ok as we haven't quite gotten to that bit in my tale.I'm just really trying to keep you interested in all my waffle lol. Ok so we are on the Tanfield Railway, lets call it a path. As we ride along there aren't many people, however the ones we do encounter are polite and move their dog out of the way. We even see a squirrel abiding the highway code and running on the correct side of the path, well until he see's a Golden retriever coming the other way. Across the Oldest Single span railway bridge in the world. I try to capture some footage, not sure how it has turned out as I decided to write my blog before doing the video. Then we head just along the path which runs parallel to the train tracks. We open the gates and cross the tracks and then open the gates once more on the other side. Now we ride down a little path, no one about and come to a road. Now this road may be private I don't know as quite a few people use it. There is a house at the end of the lane and obviously they use it, but at the end of the day the Tanfield Railway gates open up onto this path which leads to this road and yes it's a road not a path.

As we ride down this road I am in front, John and Lee chatting behind me. I see an elderly gentleman on the left approaching and slow down, give him plenty of room and say in a friendly voice "hi". As I get past this guy he calls back about "your not supposed to be on here". We all stop and I turn my bike around and shout back up the road "what". Now I didn't get all of the conversation on video, but this blokes attitude from the get go towards us is pretty aggressive. The way he was talking to us with no respect at all so obviously towards the end of our conversation he received the same amount of respect in return. "There are notices telling you no Bikes",he says in an angry voice, We haven't come across any at all and I have never had any problems riding on this route before with anyone. "Where" I say he points up the path we have just come from and says "On the post you have just passed,he starts walking away, however is still ranting . "Hold on a sec" I say "where are these signs". All I can see are disabled access signs.I head back up the road, to the path and there are NO signs other than disabled ones. Lee mentions I am disabled and that there were no NO Bike signs only disabled ones to which he replies "what a load of crap"...What did he mean...what a load of crap I'm disabled or what  a load of crap there were no signs lol Now to phrase this guy like James May I would describe him as a total Cock.
Mr Angry walks off. Bet he's the sort of bloke who lets his dogs shit all over the trail and doesn't pick it up. We ride on discussing WHY do people have to be like that? What harm where we doing? We choose to ride bikes and leave our cars at home, isn't that a good thing? We don't drop litter or vandalise stuff and we certainly don't go around mugging old grannies. Honestly I can't see why someone would get so pent up about a few lads out just enjoying the pissing rain whilst on their bikes.

When I get home I do a Google search and find out that the path we were on is indeed classed as a
Public and permissive footpath. I hold my hands up, you shouldn't really be riding a bike on it. However saying that I also don't think approaching someone in an aggressive manner when they have said "hi or hello" to you helps matters. Why couldn't this gentleman have just said "err lads you know you shouldn't be riding on here, as it's classed as a public footpath". So I stand by my original opinion and it's just an opinion, he is a Cock I base this on his attitude...Hey we may also be Cocks for riding that particular route, me being the biggest Cock of all because I led the lads down it. And truth be known I'll continue to be an even bigger Cock because I like riding on that route, so can't say I won't do it again, Oh yeah I'm a real rebel I am, check me out riding on footppaths. If caught I'll get a stiff 8 to 10 year sentence I mean it's the equivalent of armed robbery right!



Gateshead Woods, Nature Reserves, Countryside, Picnic Sites, Gardens and Parks


Bike Hub : Cycling and the Law

 


Upon thinking about our country say compared to Holland where they promote bike riding,ours sucks. What if someone from over seas was on a biking holiday, does that mean they wouldn't be allowed access to the Causey Arch Bridge and have to leave their bikes in the car park where they would probably get nicked.
It's also confusing that the cycle route around that area is called the Tanfield Railway Path and you are allowed to ride on it, however should it not be re-named a Bit of the Tanfield Railway Path.

People seem to whine and bitch about the least bit thing these days. And this respect your elders thing is total BS as it's generally the older people disrespecting the younger generation. I have always tried to be polite when I'm out riding. I don't want to get into confrontations or arguments I like my friends are just out for a little bit of fun, relieve a bit of stress and see some of our beautiful countryside.


So so far on our adventures we have come across some right nasty characters. It was Pickles and Laura the explorer last weekend and now this fella who was a total Cock and a grumpy old git.

Never mind this encounter gave me something to write about and the highway patrol  haven't been out to arrest me as yet.

The next bit is rather boring, it was just basically a ride home, taking in Beamish Hall and then the long ride back up to the top where Beamish Museum's entrance is once again. We then got on the C2C, now I know bikes are allowed on here. Off at the back of the sports centre and come out at Iceland 's car park. We went home a slightly different way heading all the way down Stanley's very bumpy and ugly Front Street. It's about time the whole town was flattened. At the bottom of the street we headed across to St Andrew's and past the cemetery. A little ride up and across the road to the Northern Bus Garage and along the path until we got to the subway, A left here then another and we were on Wear Road. John said his goodbye's he was freezing bless him. Lee and I rode down the back street of Durham Road and had a really nice chat outside my house. When Lee left I popped into our house and called for Ern. "I'm freezing" I say  and dang it I've had to throw a pair of my fav gloves out as they had a hole in them. Ern takes one look at me and bursts out laughing. I am covered from head to toe in mud and grime. "I need my Bartlett Tendon servicing for Tuesday" I say. My BTK is filthy. I head out to our back yard and start to wash off my bike, as I'm finished Ern comes out and gives me a hand clean my boots. He takes the hose and sprays the bottoms of my soles,whilst I'm wearing them. He then decides "Oh I may as well clean the whole of your boots", he then  proceeds to wash my shorts, my leg and my jacket, so basically I had a freezing cold shower outside with a garden hose.

I'm now in all warm and cosy and reflecting on our mini adventure. Even on days like this you can still get out there and have fun, it just depends on the company.

The End

5 comments:

  1. Yet another great blog and totally agree with everything you say. Great pictures - and proof that you can have great fun in Britain's typical weather (even though you must be mad to go out and 'play' in that rain). You remind me of three young boys, carefree, worry-free, playing out come rain, hail or shine, and making your own adventures to reminisce later this year, and time and time again in years to come ! Brilliant !

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  2. Thanks Michelle. I really enjoy heading out and just sharing in some fun,seeing new places, finding new routes and having a a laugh,I love storing stuff in my memory banks so I can re-tell the tales on my blog and create lasting memories. It's a bit like therapy, you can always tell if I'm going through a bad patch as my blog dries up lol x

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  3. Nice 1 mate,still drying out. Great blog as always.

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  4. Classic abort even if I do say so myself great vid bud.

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  5. Glad you enjoy my tales John, must get out and do more stuff, people are bound to get bored of reading about cycling lol

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